Everything sublime is as difficult as it is rare. Baruch Spinoza

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Shine On

Where does the white go when the snow melts?  ~Author Unknown

We finally have a mild, sunny day. It has been an awful winter and my mood has definitely been reflective of the weather. Sometimes I hardly recognize this evil-tempered person that has inhabited my body. If I had a choice, I wouldn't want to spend any time with this person.

Spring is at least two months away, but hopefully winter will begin to ease a bit, taking my dark mood with it. I will heartily attempt to contain my complaints about mud as our state warms and the snow melts. No promises though.

Friday, January 30, 2009

All the King's Horses........

My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four. Unless there are three other people. ~ Orson Welles

There is a blog thing going around - Fitness Friday. I am not a fan of organized exercise and diet, so I have resisted (and still am), but Friday seemed to be the day for me to complain about my plight! I am a butterball. I think someone snuck in at night and injected me with jello, because there can be no other reason for all this stuff around my middle and across my butt. I absolutely waddle.

I long ago gave up the idea I would ever be what I once was, but I didn't know I would become Humpty-Dumpty. Please. So, I decide, do I continue the waddle walk or do I watch what I eat? What other four words could strike such terror as those. I know it's unhealthy to carry so much weight, so I'm going to be forced into action. Seriously, I've cut off 11 inches of my hair and didn't lose a pound. What's up with that? I guess I need to cut out ice cream, wine with dinner and I guess what I have for dinner, since the hair thing didn't work. I can't think of a way to make myself taller (I've always believed I am undertall rather than overweight), so I need to consider the food. Maybe I'll search Craig's List for a treadmill, something being dumped by someone else who thought it was once a good idea. 

Ah well, I sit here eating yeast rolls covered in blueberry preserves as I write about doing something about my weight. So goes my life, lots of thought, not so much action.

I put a weight-loss tracker on the sidebar, but don't hold your breath waiting for it to move!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Rereading Oscar

Fingal O'Flahertie Wills

16 October 1854
Dublin, Ireland
30 November 1900
Paris, France

I know that when plays last too long, spectators tire. My tragedy has lasted far too long; its climax is over; its end is mean; and I am quite conscious of the fact that when the end does come I shall return as an unwelcome visitant to a world that does not want me.

De Profundis and Essays

(Letters From Reading Gaol)

There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That's all.
Opening page of Dorian Gray

Oscar Wilde, witty, urbane and in the end, tragic. And relevant a century after his death. The victim of one of Britain's periodic moral episodes, he spent 2 years in Reading Jail (Gaol) for homosexuality. He died penniless 3 years later. 

I have his complete works, I bought this in the mid-eighties and haven't returned to it since. My reference to Dorian Gray in an earlier entry brought him back to my mind. So I'm reading The Picture of Dorian Gray. I'll continue with The Importance of  Being Ernest. I won't work my way through all of it at once, but I'll leave the volume at my bedside.

Tagged (Again)

I got this tag from brainyandbeautiful
I had a little time and decided to play. I'm not sure anyone wants to know more about me, but here it is!

1. Link to the person who tagged you & post the rules on your blog.
2. Share seven random &/or weird facts about you.
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post & include links to their blogs.
4. Leave a comment on the blogs of those you tag letting them know.

Seven random facts about me.

1. I'm blunt and somewhat stern in my demeanor, leaving people with an impression that I'm unfriendly and tough. I'm neither, I just don't spend much time on prelude.

2. I love roses, lilies and iris. I have bred horses named Rose, Lily and Iris.

3. I have a personality trait that can make me overly inquisitive and completely disinterested, sometimes at the same time.

4. I tend to be reclusive, but I'm not shy nor am I in the least uncomfortable in a crowd of people.

5. I am a serious reader and I'll read just about anything. I'm not a literature snob, I'll read the cereal box.

6. I dislike many of our modern electronics. I think cell phones are used in a rude manner. Put the phone away when you are with me. The world won't collapse around you, I guarantee it. I dislike it when I am on the phone with a friend and I get put on hold when another call comes in. Is it really more important to talk to the person calling then the person you are talking to. Let it go to voice mail or tell me you will hang up because this call means more then mine.

7. I tend to follow the rules, I have little patience for entrenched ignorance and no patience at all for profession of religiosity while supporting political positions that are harmful to and dismissive of people, especially those in need. 

I'm going to break the rules, against what I said in #7, and not tag anyone, so if you want to play along, please do so. If you want to play but don't have a blog you can use my comment box.

Twixt Thinks And Thanks

You cannot be lonely if you like the person you're alone with.
Wayne W. Dyer

My Thursday is muddled between my Thinks and my Thankfulness, so I will meld them together today.

I'm so very thankful for Babe's unexpected surge of life at the critical moment and her ensuing recovery. This ranks right at the top as one of the most amazing things I have ever experienced. I'm cautiously optimistic about Gracie's recovery, she has been doing better the last few days.

It's the Democratic party, not the Democrat party. A Democrat is a member of the Democratic party. I know this started with the Republican Revolution in 1994 and some wordsmith decided Democratic sounded too inclusive and egalitarian, so everyone dropped the 'ic'. I can't stand it. So politicians and talking heads, please stop.

I think America elected Democrats because they didn't think Republican policies have worked. So why are the Republicans being given so much face time as they tout the same old, same old...tax cuts. That sure created a lot of jobs and prosperity for the average fellow over the past 8 years, didn't it.

I've had enough of winter. Either this winter has been gruelling or I have become soft. I dread going outside, something which is new for me. I've always rather liked winter. I think it's probably been a harsh one.

I'm going to tend my gardens better this year. I need to focus my attentions better than I have been doing. I love my gardens, but I have let them go for several years. Either take care of them or don't have them! I'm going to try to tend the people in my life better also. I really don't put much attention into that and I believe I should rethink this. I had so much fun the couple of times I was on one of my horses and out and about with friends last year that I think I need to consider doing more of it. So, perhaps tending my gardens is a metaphor. Perhaps all of these items are my garden and I need to tend them.

I think blogging is a strange idiosyncrasy. Which seems to make it a perfect medium for me, but also makes me wonder why someone (me) wants to sit down and write thoughts and opinions and send them out into cyber-space for consumption. Odd.

Did I mention I'm weary of winter? I'm very weary of winter. The only thing that is keeping me from courting the idea of spring is the mud it brings. I'm a torn person.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I have made a couple of changes to the comments box. I removed the strange letters to be copied and I have allowed access without registering. This blog isn't busy enough to worry about the items those precautions are there to protect against and I think they are a nuisance that isn't needed in my case.

New Trick

I just learned how to insert video, so I'm doing a double today. This is Sylvia Plath reading Lady Lazarus. I'm not going to print the words, as it is best to just listen.

Poetry Wednesday

Is there no way out of the mind. ~ Sylvia Plath

The Bee Keepers Daughter

Sylvia Plath

A garden of mouthings. Purple, scarlet-speckled, black
The great corollas dilate, peeling back their silks.
Their musk encroaches, circle after circle,
A well of scents almost too dense to breathe in.
Hieratical in your frock coat, maestro of the bees,
You move among the many-breasted hives,

My heart under your foot, sister of a stone.

Trumpet-throats open to the beaks of birds.
The Golden Rain Tree drips its powders down.
In these little boudoirs streaked with orange and red
The anthers nod their heads, potent as kings
To father dynasties. The air is rich.
Here is a queenship no mother can contest ---

A fruit that's death to taste: dark flesh, dark parings.

In burrows narrow as a finger, solitary bees
Keep house among the grasses. Kneeling down
I set my eyes to a hole-mouth and meet an eye
Round, green, disconsolate as a tear.
Father, bridegroom, in this Easter egg
Under the coronal of sugar roses

The queen bee marries the winter of your year.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


In the clearing stands a boxer and a fighter by his trade,
And he carries the reminders of every glove that laid him down,
Or cut him 'til he cried out in his anger and his shame,
"I am leaving, I am leaving."
But the fighter still remains.
The Boxer - Simon and Garfunkle

She looks like a boxer, with her swollen eyes and her robe. She is also a fighter and she took her lumps and came out swinging, so to speak. The crowd is cheering Babe. The bell has rung, let's see some dung.

Between The Needle And The Damage Done (Almost)

Consciousness is our only reprieve from Time.
Mason Cooley

It's said lightening never strikes twice, but bad luck, karma or just plain crap, strikes as much as it wants. 

Neil Young's old song, about heroin addiction, has a somewhat different meaning in the context of this blog entry. We nearly had a needle and very permanent damage done to my mare, The Babe. I won't drone on about the long details of the day, but yesterday, two weeks to the day when Tanzar died, we were in the barn loft in sub-zero temperatures and darkness, with Babe, waiting for the vet to fill a syringe with the fluid which would end Babe's existence. My Babe, Diamond Rose's first foal, the dam of a US National Top Ten Mare and our Baby Girl, was shaking so violently as we stood waiting for the vet that I thought the barn shook with her. Two hearts were cracked wide open as we stood with her, trying to comfort her and to grasp what was happening. Then she spread her hind legs and peed, a long, hard, steady stream of urine, accompanied by an explosion of gas. And her eyes changed. Stop. Wait a minute, I need to see how she is. So back into the barn to check her again. Babe put her head down and started to eat hay in the aisle. I wanted to see if she would stay on her feet in her stall, so hay went in there as I released her from the lead. Head down, calmly munching hay. The muscle tremors stopped, although she still shivered. We started to hear faint gut sounds as she calmly ate. I wrapped her in a cooler and blanket, she received a fourth dose of banamine and we left her alone.

I checked The Babe throughout the night and she was relaxed, but tired from her very difficult day. Morning found her up and in resting position, both eyes swollen shut from the thrashing her head got as she struggled with the pain of her colic. But her hay was gone, as well as the water in the bucket. She's not out of it yet, as the coveted passing of manure has not yet happened, but she is not uncomfortable, so there is hope.

Someone I know told me a few years ago I was so lucky that I didn't have to go out to work in the world. This former friend said it would be wonderful to not have any stress. I think someone had to keep me from killing her with my bare hands.

Between the needle and the damage done, was Babe trembling herself out of a colic that was going to end her life. I think Tanzar's spirit told her to snap out of it, cause this is permanent. I told you he was the best horse on the farm

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Power Of Imagery

I looked for an image of 'Made In America' and the upper image is what I got that wasn't copyrighted.

It bothered me though  and I think I knew why, even as I used it. I remembered this image, but it sat at the back of my mind and tweaked it until I looked for it.

I needed to address it, because that isn't what we need signifying 'Made in America'. It's an image with a horrible history. But I don't think it's an accident that this image exists. No more than the creepy symbolism of naming a Federal department Homeland Security. Sounds a little too close to the Volk. I needed to get this off my chest, as I used an image that I was uncomfortable with from the onset.

Once Upon A Time In America, We Made Things

America's greatest strength, and its greatest weakness, is our belief in second chances, our belief that we can always start over, that things can be made better.
Anthony Walton

I know I periodically return to this topic, but it keeps slapping me upside the head. I used my KitchenAid mixer again today and I told Mark that it has been working in my kitchen since 1991. He jokingly said "made in America'. To which I replied, probably. And it is American Made. 18 years ago KitchenAid was still made here.

This morning I was watching the talk shows and on one of them the comment was made that 2/3's of our economy is driven by spending. I may have too much horse sense, but it would seem easy to figure out that you can't have a successful economy that is based almost entirely on purchasing goods produced elsewhere. That's a definition of a third world country. Ship raw material out and buy the goods that come back in. And then eventually you have what we now have. Unemployment and lowering of wages. Something then happens to that consumer-based economy as less people are able to consume. You'd think the 'best and the brightest' could figure that out, but perhaps the concept is too simple.

I wonder what will happen. I wonder if Congress will have the will, the chutzpah, to take this issue on. Probably not, but I would like to retain a glimmer of hope.

As I look at the image heading this blog, I wonder...... would we be a different nation if we did not have a flesh eating bird as our national symbol? I'll never know.

When There's More Behind You Than In Front Of You

To me old age is always fifteen years older than I am.
Bernard Baruch

I have been repeating something a lot lately..........35 years ago, 40 years ago, etcetera, etcetera. 

Someone on facebook was trying to stop smoking and I realized I stopped smoking 33 years ago. Ashley's daughter, Sienna, did a tie-dye project and I realized I wore that look 40 - some years ago. When some of my younger friends reach my age I will likely be DEAD! How's that for an OMG. 

The strange thing about it is, the body ages but not the mind. Hopefully, but not necessarily, one matures. But, I don't think of myself as any different, until I get that unexpected glimpse of myself. Now that's a bitch, when you see yourself without being prepared. When you look in a mirror there is a subconscious preparedness happening. But when you get a glimpse of yourself without thinking about it, that's when the world momentarily collapses around you and leaves you wonder what the @#%$*&^ happened. 

Ten years from now I will look back and wish I was this age again. And if there are another ten years after that I will think the same thing. I think I like the Benjamin Button idea, born old and grow young. Or I could try a portrait in the attic, ala Dorian Gray. In the meantime I guess I'll just continue to hone my 'crazy old lady' persona and get all I can out of this, since I can't seem to figure out how to stop it. I don't think I will go gently into that good night, though.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


As some of you know, I have recently been trying my hand at bread-making. I have used the mixer to blend the ingredients, but not to knead the bread. So today I decided to make some rolls for dinner and try machine kneading. It was easier on my hands, but I'm not sure of the results. I think I'll try one more time with bread, but I may continue the hard way.

I've tried rolls a couple of times and I'm not satisfied with the results. I make very good biscuits, so I may be wise to stick with what I know!
I really should have been cleaning the house. I do hate that job, I really do!

Gracie Greyhound

*Update the update:  She got dumpy this afternoon and I had to give her fluids again. I may need to spend the $1000+ on an endoscopy or continue this ride.  Sometimes modern advances make things harder.*
*Photos of skinny greyhound added*

A dog is not "almost human" and I know of no greater insult to the canine race than to describe it as such. John Holmes

I thought I would give a greyhound update. I now know how bad it was and I'm very surprised she lived. I guess it is a testament to her strong will and body. 

Grace became ill again on Sunday of last week, but made it through the night. I got her to the clinic Monday and she was once again severely dehydrated. I was shown how to administer fluids, so after she received fluids at the clinic it was up to me to do this over a couple of days at home. I'm happy to say she pulled out of it.

Grace has  inflammatory bowel disease which is caused by dietary hypersensitivity/food intolerance to excessive types of protein in the diet combined with genetic predisposition to dietary sensitivity. The treatment is a single protein food, with the protein being one she has not had before. She is eating venison with sweet potato. She's become very expensive to feed! She is also on multiple medications and will be for some time. One of those is prednisone for the intestinal inflammation and to suppress her immune system. She's on a high dose for 4 weeks and then on a low dose for 6 months or more. 

She is feeling better since she started the prednisone and the venison diet. She gained a pound from Monday and her vet visit on Thursday. She's still an aggressive female that terrorizes Atlas and Howard, but I'm happy she is still with us. Although I sometimes do wonder why.

If you have dogs I would get them on a minimum protein diet, as you have no way of knowing if your dog is predisposed to food intolerance until it happens. You don't need to go directly to a single protein food, but a food with no more than 3 proteins is a good idea. I have my other two dogs on Royal Canin Sensible Choice Chicken & Rice. The trauma and expense of Gracie's disease isn't to be wished on anyone. It's far less expensive to start them on a different food than to deal with the effects if you have a dog that gets sick. Even if you don't treat the illness, you will suffer an emotional expense when you lose the pet to something that is preventable. I guess this is my new cause.

Friday, January 23, 2009


*I fixed the link. : )

I got this tag from Just Jules

It seemed like an interesting tag, so here it is. You go to your fourth photo file and post the fourth photo in the file and explain it. It was a high percentage chance that mine would be of a horse!

This isn't hard to explain. The American Saddlebred stallion, The Denver Mint, making his debut under saddle at the Fergus Falls Pinto show. Jean L.'s daughter Jaime is up and Jean is the person with the camera in the background.
'Solo' is a National Champion in halter, but he was never started under saddle until I got him as a 10 year-old horse. Jean and Jaime trained him and he finally made it to the ring at this show. He was on his way to winning this class when he kicked up a large clump of dirt against the wall and scared himself silly. Jaime stayed on, but it took too long to recover. It was a great ride though and I was so pleased to see him complete it. He has soundness issues, so it was the first and the last time.

Shrouded In Fog And Frost

Frost is the greatest artist in our clime - he paints in nature and describes in rime.
Thomas Hood

We were enclosed in fog and frost yesterday morning, creating a beautiful and strange winter scene.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thursday's Thinks

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.
Herm Albright

Thursday, once again. Time does fly. So on goes the thinking cap and out come the thoughts.

I think President Obama has a tremendous task before him and I believe he  is quite possibly the best choice we could have made for the job. I will not be happy with every thing he does, but I have never been happy with every thing anybody has done. I expect to see Guantanamo Bay closed and America finding its soul once again. I fervently hope that Congress investigates the Bush administration and charges them with war crimes. I hope we can join the rest of western civilization and finally provide universal health care. Being well is not a privilege reserved for those who can afford it and it is obscene for people to make billions of dollars on the backs of people's health. I think that Congress needs to deal with American corporations which put their official headquarters in a closet in the Cayman Islands to avoid taxes. I also think there needs to be a financial repercussion for shipping every job possible to a third world country. I think that Congress needs to hold the financial institutions accountable for the 350 billion dollars of taxpayer money that disappeared like smoke in the wind. I believe the welfare of the people needs to be placed above the welfare of business. We cannot allow Wall Street to determine Main Street. Wall Street needs to once again be a reflection of Main Street. 

I think Gracie is doing better, finally, but I will know more after her Dr appointment today. I know she has caused us great stress.

I think the country will start to move forward again, as I believe how we feel effects how we act. We have collectively felt as if we had a jackboot firmly placed on the back of our necks.

I've been thinking that, other than Obama becoming President, the year 2009 has not started well for me personally. So, I think it must be time for it to get better. That would be nice!

I think that is enough thinks for now.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Poetry Wednesday

A person who publishes a book willfully appears before the populace with his pants down. If it is a good book nothing can hurt him. If it is a bad book nothing can help him.  Edna St. Vincent Millay

Afternoon on a Hill


 I will be the gladdest thing 
   Under the sun! 
I will touch a hundred flowers 
   And not pick one. 

I will look at cliffs and clouds 
   With quiet eyes, 
Watch the wind bow down the grass, 
   And the grass rise. 

And when lights begin to show 
   Up from the town, 
I will mark which must be mine, 
   And then start down! 

Edna St. Vincent Millay

The Poetry Of Outrage

A year ago last week a house was moved down my street, in the wee hours of the night, which is when houses are moved. The wee hours is pertinent because what happened only happened because of the cover of darkness. Our house is flanked by 60 year old Norwegian Spruce on the west and south as a wind/dust/privacy screen. They are a huge part of the property's appeal. The trees to the south face the road.

The owner of the house being moved is an evangelical minister who has a congregation in the small town a couple of miles from my home. He hired a house mover, but he provided his own crew, members of his 'outreach' congregation. Men who found God through him and struggle to overcome their addictions. Vulnerable people.

They went along the road with chain saws and cut back and cut down trees. They took down 8 trees belonging to my neighbor, 3 of them large trees, none of which were close to the road. They butchered my trees, the spruce as well as a stand of slow-growing red cedar trees east of my driveway.  The cedars were not close to the road, it seems they were just there and a bunch of guys had chain saws.

I called the sheriff's office when I saw what happened. A long story, so I'll cut to the chase; the county attorney's office brought suit against the man on a felony property damage charge. I started the action and my neighbors joined in.

Several cancelled court appearances later and I get a letter that today there is a settlement hearing and my presence is not necessary. This is not my lawsuit, but a criminal case and I don't have anything to say about what happens.

Last night at 7:30 the victims coordinator called me and started the conversation with, the attorney working on the case has put a lot of time into this. I don't think so, since I made the case for them myself knowing that if I didn't it probably wouldn't be considered. I should have known what was coming. Charges have been reduced to a petty misdemeanor, public nuisance, with a slap on the wrist and any restitution would be at the misdemeanor level. She cited a MN statute providing for the right of a neighbor to trim back trees from the adjoining property if they are encroaching upon your property. Broadly interpreted, I'm told this statute applies because this house had a reasonable right to travel down the road unencumbered, allowing the willful destruction of personal property. The interpretation of this statue to apply to this situation is so ridiculous a first year law student could pick it apart. I, in my always calm manner, told her she was shoving this crap so far up my behind that it could see my tonsils. She hung up on me. I'm reading Frank McCourt at this time, so in my head were his Irish words, a little more colorful......you're shooving this so far up my fooking arse.......... I was rather loud and indignant, but I did not swear at the woman. 

This is a direct result of the budget cuts in the state and the management of our state by our 'no taxes' governor. The state of MN has fallen into disrepair. I read an article a week ago about the cuts in the judicial system. The attorney handling this case was undoubtedly was told to wrap this up. I was told I could hire a lawyer and file a civil suit. Thanks.

So this is what we are left with and the man gets away with what he did. I see his vehicle drive by every day and now I can see him figuratively giving me the one finger salute each time he goes by. BTW, he has a reputation as a bad dude in the area. It seems just about everyone has a tale to tell about the minister. And he just got by with something else.

You could not see through the trees to the road before they sliced and diced.

Red Cedar branches on the ground.

Branches cut back 20 feet up. They'll never come back.



This tree was mutilated. It had beautiful, full cascading boughs. This is what is left. The minister pulled a permit in Nov. to move the house in Jan. He never asked us about the trees, which could have been tied back. He did what he wanted and he told me when I asked him about that it was done and there was nothing I could do about it. I guess he was right.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


There is not a black America and a white America and a Latino America and an Asian America - there is a United States of America.
Barack Obama

I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.
Abraham Lincoln

What we want him to be......

What he is........

What we need him to be.


Monday, January 19, 2009

And So It Has Come To Pass

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."

Goodbye & Goodriddance

A failure is a man who has blundered but is not capable of cashing in on the experience.
Elbert Hubbard

Goodbye Mr. Bush. You will not be missed, but you will be remembered. I wish you nothing, but that you be gone. Go back to Texas, cut brush and fall off your mountain bike. 

Hasta Lavista.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Simple Life

The ordinary arts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest

Thomas More

We had a long, busy day yesterday and it's not over yet, but today will get us caught up. The horses and the work didn't do me in, so I'm ready to do it all over again today. It's a good thing I rarely reflect on the futility of it, for it would drive me mad!

After a long day we had a nice evening with a dinner of crab cakes, spicy rice, salad and chardonnay. We watched Juno on HBO and I was surprised how entertaining it is. The film was hyped so much I expected not to like it. I did like it, it was a gentle film and I didn't expect that.

There is nothing like a warm house, good food and a nice movie when your body is tired. 

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Just Call Me Fool

Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction. ~ Cowboy saying

Four days of forced captivity. Now we are suddenly at 20 degrees and windy, up from -28 yesterday morning. Ah, Minnesota.

Four days of forced captivity  and windy.......not words you want together when you have to handle the 1000 pound beasts. Mark told me years ago he wished I had become involved in something safe, like mountain climbing. This was actually said while he was conscripted as breeding help, handling a mare who's not so sure she likes the idea is NOT for the faint of heart. But, that's not the problem today. Horses wound tighter than a clock and wind. Thanks a lot.

If I don't return you know that either: a. I'm in the hospital or: b. I'm in the morgue. If one or the other happen, all I can do is hope I took the culprit with me!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Battened Down & Buttoned Up

Winter is nature's way of saying, "Up yours."  
Robert Byrne

I said I was going to do this, but didn't; until yesterday. Sustained subzero temperatures finally got me to put the plastic up over the entrance to the largely unused great room. I have the vents half-opened in there, so it won't be too cold, but the main reason for closing it off is to keep the heat IN the kitchen. That vast, vaulted space swallowed the heat from the kitchen with a loud sucking noise. Yesterday morning it was 49 degrees in the kitchen, although the thermostat was set at 63 overnight. This morning it was 60 degrees in the kitchen. Hurrah!

Who' d of thought it would come to this!

Intelligent Fools

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction
Albert Einstein

I spent my precious time watching Bush's Fare-Thee-Well Speech last night. I thought I was watching someone accepting an award. That aside, I believe I would be hard pressed to find a more delusional individual. My own sense of outrage at this man and his government surprises me. I can't think of a time when I have had such strong emotions about a person. So, he's on his way out, he leaves a wide swath of destruction behind him and I wonder where it will all lead.
I have some questions.

1.  If tax cuts for the wealthy create jobs, where are all those jobs? The wealthy have had a great tax advantage over the last eight years.

2.  If tax cuts for business encourages them to build the business and hire more people, why do those companies who put their corporate offices off-shore to avoid taxes not hire all of the Americans they can?

3.  If the Republicans are so concerned about deficit spending, why did they happily go along with it for 8 years under Bush (and Ronald Reagan)?

4.  Why would Mitt Romney call the spending proposed by Obama on infrastructure a 'pet' project of the liberals? And propose more tax cuts instead of fixing our crumbling bridges and roads? (this AM on MSNBC)

5.  Why, after all that has happened, are there still people loudly touting the so-called free market, and more importantly, people still listen AND agree?

6.  Why is anyone giving the people in Congress who rubber-stamped Bush the slightest credence in ANYTHING?

7.  Why is my house full of 20 - 30 year old items that say 'Made In America'? How did corporations make money then, paying a living wage to Americans, but somehow they can't do that now?

8.  How can a country have a viable economy when the country doesn't make anything?

9.  Do we understand now that the stock market is not the economy, that the stock market should be a reflection of the economy and not the other way around? Do we understand that when we allowed the stock market to control the economy it was only a matter of time before companies began ridding themselves of American workers, as they forever kept their eye on the bottom line and stock prices? 

10.  My biggest, seemingly unanswerable question. Why do the American people keep making the same choices over and over again? In a few years, if we climb out of this mess, the people will turn to another person who says government is bad, laissez-faire is the way to go, and we will head right back in the same direction. We've done it every time.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

What 25 Degrees Below Zero Looks Like

The long, cold Minnesota winters instilled in me a fascination for exotic far off places; I aspired toward a career in tropical diseases and world health problems. 
Peter Agre

Looks cold just looking at it


Frost on the climbing hydrangea. 

Frost on hay on the north end of the barn.

Frost patterns on a window in the barn.

Icicle on the barn.

What cold looks like.